Yellow Warbler

Common Name:  Yellow Warbler

Class: Aves

Order: Passeriformes

Family: Parulidae

Genus: Dendroica

Species: Dendroica petechia

photo Steven Pitt

Taxonomy/Description

The Yellow Warbler is easily recognized because it is an all yellow bird. The males have red streaks on the chest where females lack this trait. Males are usually brighter especially during breeding season. They are an average size of 10 to 18cm and weigh 9-11 grams.


photo Ivan Andrijevic

Habitat/Diet

The Yellow Warbler prefers bushes, swamp edges, streams and gardens with a high number of insects. This warbler primarily feeds on insects but will occasionally eat berries.

 

photo M Noonan

Behavior/Reproduction

The Yellow Wabler is a song bird and both males and females will engage in song. During the breeding season, Yellow Warblers are extremely territorial but will rejoin flocks after. These warblers are active during the day.

The Yellow Warbler is primarily monogamous but there are occasional polygynous matings (having more than one female as a mate at one time). The male attracts females by his song and can sing over 3,000 songs a day to attract a mate. There is generally only one brood a year but if the first is unsuccessful, they will breed again. The Yellow Warblers lay 4 to 5 eggs in a cup nest built by the female. The female and male will both raise the young. The Yellow Warbler is migratory and will winter from Mexico to Peru.

Where to see them in WNY

A great place to see Yellow Warblers is on the Swallow Hollow Nature trail at Iroquois NWR. Take the trail to the left and when you reach the gravel, keep your eyes out, they are very abundant in that area, especially in the spring and summer.

photo M Noonan

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